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I'm living with a relative who poses a danger to me, but they are family and I love them, what should I do?

29 Answers
Last Updated: 07/03/2018 at 9:23pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Tara Davis, Doctorate in Counselling Psychology


I have worked successfully with a wide range of difficulties. Nothing is more important than developing a warm, compassionate relationship with someone you can trust

Top Rated Answers
April 30th, 2015 3:11am
Please put your safety and well-being above the thought that you might upset or offend this relative if you shy away from them. Loving someone does not mean that you agree with or approve of their actions, and so it is not inconsistent to say that you still love them, while doing something to immediately reduce the threat posed to you. Seek help from your support system or from local authorities (911) if you are in immediate danger.
April 5th, 2015 11:59pm
If they pose a danger to you, you should put yourself first and make sure you are safe. Even if you love and care for them, the most important thing is that you're safe. Even if that may sound selfish.
August 22nd, 2016 3:06am
If this family member is dangerous I suggest that you stay away from them for your own safety. I know u love them and will do anything for them. But sometimes to love someone is to let them go if that's the best option.
July 3rd, 2018 9:23pm
This must be a very uncomfortable situation for you, have you tried talking to other family members and telling them you don't feel safe?
October 27th, 2014 2:07am
Your safety is of the utmost importance. You can love someone and remove yourself from a situation lovingly to protect yourself. Nobody deserves to feel threatened or unsafe in their own home.
December 7th, 2015 10:43pm
Find someone very trustworthy and understanding that can help you become safe. Love doesn't cause hurt and you deserve peace.
October 25th, 2014 7:16pm
I would have a conversation with them and tell them that you feel unsafe. Maybe talk to your parents about it.
October 26th, 2014 8:19pm
You should talk to your other relatives. You can also talk to the relative who poses a danger, but tell them how you feel. You are a human being, so are they. Get our family to help!
October 28th, 2014 10:52pm
Perhaps let them know about how you feel and approach them only when you feel/know that you are safe.
November 4th, 2014 12:44am
If you are in an abusive situation, you need to get out immediately. If you love this family member and want to still have a relationship to them, then ensuring that they can no longer abuse you is the first step. It may be a difficult choice to make, but when your relationship is better five years down the line, you'll both be thankful that you made the tough decision to get out.
November 5th, 2014 3:34pm
I would recommend seeking professional help. No one deserves to be in a dangerous relationship. Professionals can point you in the correct direction.
November 13th, 2014 11:32pm
You have to take care of yourself, you can always love someone from a distance especially if there a danger to you! Be safe and call 911 in case of an emergency!
November 16th, 2014 5:39pm
Well, If they're a danger for you, isn't it better to keep off them? Maybe one day you'll get in serious trouble because of them.
November 19th, 2014 10:14pm
I believe that contacting a local domestic support network will allow you to move in a direction to resolve the situation, If it is only you in danger then speak to your GP or the Police, if there is a child involved then please contact the police.
January 2nd, 2015 12:11am
If you are in immediate danger, you need to get out now, go to a friend or someone you trust or the authorities if you need to. Your safety is the first thing you need to deal with. If you are safe for now, reach out to someone you trust and let them help you
January 3rd, 2015 6:23am
Even though they are family, the fact that they pose a danger to you means you need to take some form of immediate action. Get a third party involved and/or stay away from them.
March 31st, 2015 2:28am
Please put your safety first. You should never be in danger, and if you are, please contact authorities, or call and emergency help line.
April 11th, 2015 10:18pm
Talk to someone whether that be a teacher, a friend or someone in authority. Your safety is most important.
April 24th, 2015 11:08am
It's a gut-wrenching feeling to love someone who has hurt you, but it happens more often than many people know. First of all, you should know that you're not alone. Secondly, it's not your fault. And, third, no one has the right to hurt you, physically or emotionally. It's easy to say, "You should leave." And that's what a lot of people say in these situations, but it is ultimately your choice and it will probably not be an easy one to make. If you do decide to leave, you should have a plan of escape, and know what to take with you and where you can go that will be safe (a hotel, a friend's house, a shelter, etc.). Try to talk to someone you trust, and who will support you no matter if you decide to stay or leave.
June 5th, 2015 11:26am
Speaking up is the right thing to do if you don't feel comfortable with someone or actions of a family member. If you consider them as your family than its no harm in sharing your feelings and saying no to something wrong.
June 5th, 2015 10:33pm
I think this largely depends on your age and whether you are a dependent of that relative. If you are under 18 and you are truly in danger, it might be wise to reach out to CPS (Child Protective Services), a counselor at school, a teacher you trust at school, a social worker, another family member or family friend that is an adult that you trust, etc. These are people that are trained and have the know-how to protect you safely and in a professional manner. If the danger becomes so significant that it is threatening to your body, you have every right to call 911. It would be incredibly hard to do that to a family member, but you must remember that they are people that happen to be your family and make mistakes. No one is perfect. You must also evaluate how you think that family should act: should they be dangerous to you? Is that okay in a family? If not, do you think you should really feel they are family? It is okay to protect yourself from all danger. If you are over 18, talking with a psychologist, social worker, attorney, or family friend or relative that you trust are also good tactics. You also have the power to move out of the house and away from the person. You don't have to say that it is because they feel dangerous -- people move for lots of reasons. Be certain to put up boundaries to keep yourself safe. It is okay to make those boundaries very strong, even with family members that you love. Your love and relationship may be in fact much better and less dangerous if you put up those boundaries. Always remember that it is okay to seek professional or emergency assistance if necessary. Consider the questions I put up about family above. Those are really key to your decisions about not only how to protect yourself, but the extent to which you are willing to go to do so.
June 17th, 2015 5:01am
If you love them work on maybe going to a councilor, it may be hard but it will help you and them to have a better relationship.
October 26th, 2015 3:51pm
Although they are family, call a health center for help. If your life is in danger don't hesitate to leave. By getting help for yourself and your relative you are helping the situation, and doing it out of love.
December 21st, 2015 10:08pm
Seek professional help and alert both as well a person you trust outside your family and explain thoroughly what happend. If this person believe it's wise to go to the authorities with this, try to go together with that person.
February 23rd, 2016 11:36am
It can be really difficult to report family because even after the damage that they've done, and how what they're doing is clearly wrong, you still forgive them because they're family? But maybe you are also forgiving them because you are scared of what might happen if you stand up to them? Will it make the rest of the family hate you for turning your back on family? But in the end wrong is wrong, no matter who is responsible, they don't deserve to get away with it, nor do you deserve to have to take it.
July 25th, 2016 5:29pm
If you are in danger its better to find an alternative living arrangement no matter what.. Your safety should be your primary concern!
October 10th, 2016 10:17pm
Inform some one, if you feel like you are in danger contact the police or speak to a family member -
May 8th, 2017 4:29am
You should assess the gravity of the danger and if you feel that it is quite serious there are two options either you move out or ask the person to move out. If that is not possible ensure that you are never alone in that person's company. It is also possible that you make it clear to that person that if he does any activity which you perceive would harm you the consequences would be serious for him. What you do is entirely depending upon the situation and you should make the decision accordingly.
December 4th, 2017 8:26pm
Sounds like you are really reaching out for support to help you with such a difficult situation. Your safety is very important. Keeping yourself safe doesn't mean that you have to stop loving your family member.